Thursday, April 7, 2016

1) West Papua a regional issue, says Liberation Movement

2) Oil Palm Plantations Destroy Indigenous Way of Life
3) Papua 58 Percent of Provincial Road Not Paved
4) Landslide in Yahukimo, 153 Families Face Food Shortage 
5) Only 30 % Population in Papua Enjoy Clean Water
6) Yeresiam Tribal Chief Calls Indigenous Papuans to Against Oil Palm Company
7) MSG Chair Welcomes Jakarta’s Assistance Towards Fiji’s recovery Process
1) West Papua a regional issue, says Liberation Movement
2:38 pm today
The United Liberation Movement for West Papua says Papua remains an issue for the wider Melanesian region despite Indonesia's efforts to internalise it.
Since the Liberation Movement was granted observer status in the Melanesian Spearhead Group last year, Indonesia has increased its diplomatic engagement with MSG member states.
Jakarta, which has MSG associate member status, is lobbying to fend off support for West Papuan self-determination and said it had the support of Fiji and Papua New Guinea to become a full member.
This follows last week's Indonesian ministerial visit to PNG and Fiji where Jakarta handed over five million US dollars in cyclone relief assistance.
One of the Liberation Movement's interior executives, Markus Haluk, said the lobbying was to be expected.
"Indonesia lobby money and economy for Fiji and Papua New Guinea. But no problem, we are optimists, because West Papua problem is same Melanesia problem."
Markus Haluk said that in Papua itself, grassroots support for the Liberation Movement was huge.
The opening of a ULMWP office in Wamena, Papua province, in February, was attended by an estimated five to six thousand Papuans.
However, following the opening, Indonesian police dismantled the Liberation Movement signage as well as detained Mr Haluk and a fellow ULMWP member for questioning over their involvement in establishing the office.
Leading Indonesian government officials have said that movements which harbour independence aspirations must be crushed.
Yet Papuan leaders have repeatedly identified brutal treatment of their people by the security forces as a main driver of dissatisfaction with Indonesian rule.
2) Oil Palm Plantations Destroy Indigenous Way of Life
5 April 2016

                                                                Yerisiam Tribes marked their land – Jubi

Jayapura, Jubi – Papua Provincial Government believes palm oil can bring prosperity to indigenous Papuans by handing out permits  to palm oil plantations without considering the impact on the environment .
The Coalition for the Victims of Nabire Oil Palm Plantations conducted an open discussion by presenting the victims of oil palm plantations from Keerom and Mimika. Coalition chief John NR Gobai said the presence of oil palm plantations in Papua has brought a negative impact into the life of indigenous Papuans, namely the threats to the young generation and natural disasters in many regions.
“Because it caused flood disaster, dismissed the people’s livelihood and destroyed the sago forest. Herewith we made statement to reject the oil palm plantation in the land of Papua,” Gobai told Jubi at Intan Jaya Studen Dormitory in Jayapura City, Monday (04/04/2016).
Thus, the Coalition for the Victims of Nabire Oil Palm Plantation asked to the judges at Jayapura State Administrative Court and Sorong District Court to accept a lawsuit by customary people.
Keerom resident Emel Fatagor, who also the victim of oil palm plantation, said a meeting involved all relevant stakeholders in Papua is required in responding this issue.
“Though we have fought for decades for taking back the customary forests deprived by oil palm company; but we (Arso natives) found out recently that PTPN II didn’t have a land concession (HGU) as requirement to open the oil palm plantation. It only has the HGU after sixteen years of conversion of forests into oil palm plantations,” he said.
He explained this fact was revealed during the General Hearing on National Indigenous Customary Law Rights Inquiry in the forest area that was held in Jayapura on 26 – 28 November 2014, or thirthy years after PTPN II was being operated in Keerom. Although complaining about it for several times, but the Arso natives could not do much. Papua border area always becomes a special region, a state military operation area, which is full equipped with military checkpoints at certain distance. It also becomes a hiding place of OPM – Free Papua Movement members. So, it is completed. The existence of PTPN II, OPM and forests in the border of neighboring country are enough for the Indonesian military to put Keerom region as a target of security priority.
“The problem is, the term of security by State has not similar point of Keerom residents,” he said.
Meanwhile, Yerisiam Gua Tribal Chief Dabiel Yarawobi said ‘Save the people and forest of Papua’ endorsed by Papua People’s Assembly and Papua Provincial Government should not apply as an empty slogan, but should become a concrete measure.
“It shouldn’t become an meaningless moral calling or merely fundraising object. This must create a concrete measure for all of us: make regulations, build up the awareness and also take a firm action. Nature would select those who work with forest destroyer investors,” he said.
In this forum, he also talked about oil palm in Mimika, which standing along the road of Mimika to Paniai. (Abeth You/rom)

3) Papua 58 Percent of Provincial Road Not Paved
6 April 2016

Jayapura, Jubi – Access to quality transportation to connect indigenous Papuans still leaves much to be desired, Papua Governor Lukas Enembe said. The lack of road construction is due to a budget shortfall for infrastructure that is annually allocated through the Special Autonomy funds.
According to the government, the budget shortfall up to the end of fiscal year 2015 has affected the construction of provincial roads, which are of 2,065 kilometers, 41.65 percent is solid road while 58.34 percent is the dirt road. Meanwhile, 2,682.85 kilometers of road access in the provincial road planning is still the forest areas and/or not yet constructed to connect the services center of indigenous Papuans.
Additionally, the additional budget from the Special Autonomy funds for 2016 of more than Rp 1 trillion for the road and transportation, and the Special Allocated Budget for the road of Rp 350 billion only meet the requirement of regular maintenance cost of 860 km x Rp300 million = Rp 258 billion, of periodic maintenance and asphalt improvement of 300 km x Rp 4 billion = Rp 1,2 trilion.
“It means there is 800 km of the dirt road not be maintenance,” said Elia Loupatty, the first assistant of Papua Province this week.
He measured the additional infrastructure budget from the annual budget of the Special Autonomy funds is very limited, thus it is hard to reach the target of Special Autonomy 2031 to connect the quality transportation access to the services center of indigenous Papuans.
“Therefore, this technical meeting is expected to build a synergy in the development plan between the central, provincial and regional or municipal governments in determining the priority of handling and to collectively fight for the increment of budget allocation in line with Papua Special Autonomy,” said Loupatty.
Similarly, the sector of housing and clean water development which is not becoming the public requirement also becomes a development priority, because the policy on the acceleration of the infrastructure development as well as another strategic sectors that has been determined in the vision and mission of Papua Development 2013-2018 to become a joint commitment with the government/municipal governments.
“From 80 percent of allocation budget, the regional/municipal governments obliged to allocate budget for housing construction and clean water services each year,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Head of Papua Public Works Office Mikael Kambuaya said the coordination meeting on Public Works is very important to synergy program and activities that are more measurable.
“This forum is very strategic so that target and policy goals program could be achieved in each fiscal year,” said Kambuaya. (Alexander Loen/rom)
4) Landslide in Yahukimo, 153 Families Face Food Shortage 
5 April 2016

Jayapura, Jubi – Landslides have hit Uldam Village and Illion Village, Kosabarek Sub-district of Yahukimo Regeny due to heavy rains since the last two months.
Illion Village Chief Paulus Saram said on Monday (4/4/2016) that landslides have forced hundreds of families to struggle to get food.
“Landslides hit our farms on the slopes of the mountain. All plants such as sweet potato, pandanus (red) fruit, cabbage, potato, and forest coconut were swiped by rainwater and stones and soil,” said Paulus Saram accompanied by Yafet Saram and young people from Kosarek.

He said in the incident that caused 88 families at Uldam Village and 65 families at Illion village to face food shortages.
“Local people could stand by digging ‘hipere’ (sweet potato) after the landslide. Fortunately my house wasn’t hit because it stands quite far from the location of landslide. I also tried to inform this matter to Kosarek Sub-District Head but he wasn’t at his office,” he said.
Meanwhile, reaching Dekai, the capital of Yahukimo Regency to inform the incident, he said, is difficult because no road access, but only could be reached by plane that has no certain flight schedule and list of long queue passengers.
“So, I decided to wait the flight schedule to Wamena, Jayawijaya Regency and direct to fly to Jayapura for able to confirm about the incident to the authority,” said Paulus Saram.
Meanwhile, Yafet Saram who accompanied him expected both local and provincial governments could pay attention to the natural catastrophe occurred in two villages.
“I hope the government could pay attention to the villagers of two villages, do not wait for fatalities. They must help the villagers who are being affected by this landslide,” he said. (*/rom)
5) Only 30 % Population in Papua Enjoy Clean Water
6 April 2016
Jayapura, Jubi – Papua Public Works Office said only 30 percent of  the population in Papua have access to clean water, lower than the national average.
The head of Papua Public Works Mikael Kambuaya told reporters in Jayapura, Tuesday (5/4/2016) that the national target for 2018 and 2019 for clean water supplies to the community should reach 100 percent.
“The lack of water services to the community is still happened because the regional governments do not prepare the technical plans to submit to the Central Government for budgets allocated for clean water services,” he said.
However, Kambuaya said some regional governments understand the process to receive budget for clean water services by setting programs. “Because clean water supplies for the community is important,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Head of Human Settlement and Clean Water Department of Papua Public Works Office Yan Ukago said based on the monitoring, there area about 29 percent of population in Papua served with clean water.
“Since 2014, my department has not conducted the infrastructure-related works, because the Department of Human Settlement only conduct a monitoring by recording data as well as crosschecking the number of population that already served with clean water,” said Yan Ukago.
According to him, the Central Government already allocated a special budget to regional governments, so that now they can manage it by themselves. “For clean water, there is not only those who live in the highland area to not has not been got the services of clean water, but it is also happened in Jayapura City,” he said.
He added to resolve this problem, there must be a clear and directed disposition, and for example, his department would handle some works such as drilling deep well at the southern area. “While for highland area, it could relocate the rainwater and so on,” he said. (Alexander Loen/rom)
6) Yeresiam Tribal Chief Calls Indigenous Papuans to Against Oil Palm Company
5 April 2016
Jayapura, Jubi – Yeresiam Gua Tribal Chief called for indigenous Papuans to be united to reject the oil palm plantation to operate in the land of Papua, especially in Yeresiam Land of Nabire, Papua.
“We appeal to all, let us be together to stop the oil palm plantation in our land,” Daniel Yarawobi said to the participants in the open discussion on “Oil Palm Impact Towards the Indigenous People,” that was held at Intan Jaya Student Dormitory in Waena, Jayapura City, Papua on Monday (4/4/2016).
All parties, in particular Papuans, who are currently at the government bureaucracy, NGOs, customary, youth, women organizations, journalists and students must be united to reject the oil palm plantation, because it only gives profits to the company and business owners, while a catastrophe for the people. People will lose the land tenure rights, the ownership of the land with its entire natural resources, including plants and animals that previously of their economic resources.

“We have lost. Floods happened to us. We have hurt. We have been victims for several times,” he said to point the flooding that recently happened in Yeresiam area on 25 March 2016.
‘Where we should go to speak our voice? We have done all efforts to be heard by the government, to meet with the Nabire Regional Legislative Council and Nabire Regent, but it never produced a result until now,” he said.
Since October 2015, Yeresiam people made a lawsuit against PT Nabire Baru at State Administrative Court in Jayapura to sue its business permit issued by the former Papua Governor Barnabas Suebu in 2008. The legal process is now still undergoing.
“We sued the company to go from the land of Yeresiam, because it violated the procedure to come in our land. We never signed any letters to state the land hand over. Our name was written down, but others to sign upon our name,” he said.
Tolak Sawit activist Emile Fakdagur from Workwana Village of Keerom Regency provided a similar testimony. He said the oil plantation in Keerom came with pleasant promises but never realize it.
“Sending the children to school and university had never realized. This oil palm plantation is really pointless. It’s a bunch of lies. The company only brought a catastrophe,” he said supporting Yeresiam people to reject the oil palm plantation. (Mawel Benny/rom)
7) MSG Chair Welcomes Jakarta’s Assistance Towards Fiji’s recovery Process
6 April 2016
Jayapura, Jubi – The Chair of the Melanesian Spearhead Group, Prime Minister Hon Manasseh Sogavare has welcomed Indonesia’s ‘generous’ assistance towards the recovery efforts of MSG member country, Fiji, from Cyclone Winston.
An Indonesian Government delegation led by the Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs, General Luhut Pandjaitan presented a cheque worth FJ$10-Million to the Fiji Prime Minister in Suva, Fiji, last Friday.
General Pandjaitan and his delegation visited Suva last week as part of their tour of the Melanesian sub-region.

In greeting the assistance and tour, the MSG Chair and Solomon Islands Prime Minister said the generous contribution by Indonesia towards the recovery phase of Fiji from tropical cyclone Winston demonstrated the clear need for the MSG to continue to hold on to the core values of self-determination for West Papua, as agreed by the MSG Leaders in Noumea, New Caledonia in 2014.
“The visit of the Coordinating Minister Luhut Binsar Panjaitan is a testament to the increasing solidarity of the MSG member countries. In the same vein, the plight of the people of West Papua is also a struggle that the MSG must contend with and as such the MSG Chair reiterates the offer of providing a space for a process of dialogue between an observer, United Liberation Movement for West Papua and Indonesia as an associate member of the MSG,” Sogavare said.
“Painfully, we accept the sovereignty of Indonesia over West Papua. This is a good starting point for dialogue on the future of the peoples of West Papua,” he added.
The MSG Chair also renewed the keen interest of the MSG member countries in the proposed Pacific Islands Forum mission to verify information on human rights violations in West Papua. This decision was made at the last Pacific Islands Forum in Papua New Guinea in September 2015.
He expressed his anticipation to welcome General Panjaitan and his delegation in Honiara to discuss matters of concern to the MSG and added that in the same token, he is also keen to pay a goodwill visit to Jakarta as an associate member of the MSG.
Meanwhile, the Special Secretary to MSG Chair, Rence Sore, confirmed that the MSG Special Leaders’ Summit will take place in early May 2016 at the MSG Secretariat in Port Vila. (Victor Mambor)
Source : Solomon’s PM Office

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